Why not double major?

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Lingon
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Why not double major?

Postby Lingon » Mon Apr 25, 2011 5:18 pm

I have read a couple of threads regarding whether or not it's wise to declare a second major. The consensus seems to be that all that matters is a high GPA. Why is that? Shouldn't the kid who is double majoring in Economics and Psychology and gets a 3.8 GPA get in to school X just as easily as the kid who is majoring in Criminology and gets a 4.0? What is it that I am not understanding here? I was originally thinking about declaring a second major + write a senior thesis but both seem worthless for the purpose of law school. I guess I'll just get my 4.0 in underwater basket weaving and spend my time studying the LSAT.

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Knock
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby Knock » Mon Apr 25, 2011 5:19 pm

Lingon wrote:I have read a couple of threads regarding whether or not it's wise to declare a second major. The consensus seems to be that all that matters is a high GPA. Why is that? Shouldn't the kid who is double majoring in Economics and Psychology and gets a 3.8 GPA get in to school X just as easily as the kid who is majoring in Criminology and gets a 4.0? What is it that I am not understanding here? I was originally thinking about declaring a second major + write a senior thesis but both seem worthless for the purpose of law school. I guess I'll just get my 4.0 in underwater basket weaving and spend my time studying the LSAT.


No.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby DoubleChecks » Mon Apr 25, 2011 5:19 pm

Lingon wrote:I have read a couple of threads regarding whether or not it's wise to declare a second major. The consensus seems to be that all that matters is a high GPA. Why is that? Shouldn't the kid who is double majoring in Economics and Psychology and gets a 3.8 GPA get in to school X just as easily as the kid who is majoring in Criminology and gets a 4.0? What is it that I am not understanding here? I was originally thinking about declaring a second major + write a senior thesis but both seem worthless for the purpose of law school. I guess I'll just get my 4.0 in underwater basket weaving and spend my time studying the LSAT.


iunno, ask adcomms why they only care about one major. prob cuz USNEWS doesnt give extra points for students that double majored. though i hear some top schools do give a SUPER SUPER small bump if you double majored (depending on what) as it contributes to the "rigor" of your curriculum.

firemed
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby firemed » Mon Apr 25, 2011 5:20 pm

Lingon wrote:I have read a couple of threads regarding whether or not it's wise to declare a second major. The consensus seems to be that all that matters is a high GPA. Why is that? Shouldn't the kid who is double majoring in Economics and Psychology and gets a 3.8 GPA get in to school X just as easily as the kid who is majoring in Criminology and gets a 4.0? What is it that I am not understanding here? I was originally thinking about declaring a second major + write a senior thesis but both seem worthless for the purpose of law school. I guess I'll just get my 4.0 in underwater basket weaving and spend my time studying the LSAT.



See US News rankings for explanation.

/thread

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soj
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby soj » Mon Apr 25, 2011 6:52 pm

DoubleChecks wrote:iunno, ask adcomms why they only care about one major. prob cuz USNEWS doesnt give extra points for students that double majored. though i hear some top schools do give a SUPER SUPER small bump if you double majored (depending on what) as it contributes to the "rigor" of your curriculum.

Yep. Besides, econ & psyc double major wouldn't be the kind of double major that scores these bonus points. Hard science or engineering, maybe. (Again, small bump.) But even then, a single major in hard science or engineering is probably just as strong as a double major containing a hard science or engineering.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby DoubleChecks » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:05 pm

soj wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:iunno, ask adcomms why they only care about one major. prob cuz USNEWS doesnt give extra points for students that double majored. though i hear some top schools do give a SUPER SUPER small bump if you double majored (depending on what) as it contributes to the "rigor" of your curriculum.

Yep. Besides, econ & psyc double major wouldn't be the kind of double major that scores these bonus points. Hard science or engineering, maybe. (Again, small bump.) But even then, a single major in hard science or engineering is probably just as strong as a double major containing a hard science or engineering.


Yeah, I imagine it just gets to the point of whether it makes you stand out or not...like a soft. I mean, if I were an adcomm, a person who graduated with a high GPA triple majoring in chemistry, engineering, and philosophy would definitely get some bump in my book haha.

dkt4
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby dkt4 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:41 pm

you may want to double major for the sake of learning something. maybe that could help somehow, but maybe not.

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OGR3
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby OGR3 » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:45 pm

I double majored because I loved both subjects, could still graduate in 4 years, and couldn't take any more of a hit to my GPA than my sophomore year already dished out.

If you're not in a similar situation and your end goal is law school, don't double major. A 3.7 single major is going to beat out a 3.6 double major nearly every single time.

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esq
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby esq » Mon Apr 25, 2011 7:52 pm

Lingon wrote:I guess I'll just get my 4.0 in underwater basket weaving and spend my time studying the LSAT.

Underwater? That sounds too difficult, are you sure you want to do that?

Lingon
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby Lingon » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:37 pm

So, basically, law schools only care about rankings and they get high rankings by taking in people with high GPAs. Correct? That sucks...



firemed wrote:
Lingon wrote:I have read a couple of threads regarding whether or not it's wise to declare a second major. The consensus seems to be that all that matters is a high GPA. Why is that? Shouldn't the kid who is double majoring in Economics and Psychology and gets a 3.8 GPA get in to school X just as easily as the kid who is majoring in Criminology and gets a 4.0? What is it that I am not understanding here? I was originally thinking about declaring a second major + write a senior thesis but both seem worthless for the purpose of law school. I guess I'll just get my 4.0 in underwater basket weaving and spend my time studying the LSAT.



See US News rankings for explanation.

/thread

Lingon
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby Lingon » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:39 pm

What is adcomms? Sorry, I'm new around here.


DoubleChecks wrote:
Lingon wrote:I have read a couple of threads regarding whether or not it's wise to declare a second major. The consensus seems to be that all that matters is a high GPA. Why is that? Shouldn't the kid who is double majoring in Economics and Psychology and gets a 3.8 GPA get in to school X just as easily as the kid who is majoring in Criminology and gets a 4.0? What is it that I am not understanding here? I was originally thinking about declaring a second major + write a senior thesis but both seem worthless for the purpose of law school. I guess I'll just get my 4.0 in underwater basket weaving and spend my time studying the LSAT.


iunno, ask adcomms why they only care about one major. prob cuz USNEWS doesnt give extra points for students that double majored. though i hear some top schools do give a SUPER SUPER small bump if you double majored (depending on what) as it contributes to the "rigor" of your curriculum.

mettasutta
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby mettasutta » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:41 pm

Lingon wrote:What is adcomms? Sorry, I'm new around here.


DoubleChecks wrote:
Lingon wrote:I have read a couple of threads regarding whether or not it's wise to declare a second major. The consensus seems to be that all that matters is a high GPA. Why is that? Shouldn't the kid who is double majoring in Economics and Psychology and gets a 3.8 GPA get in to school X just as easily as the kid who is majoring in Criminology and gets a 4.0? What is it that I am not understanding here? I was originally thinking about declaring a second major + write a senior thesis but both seem worthless for the purpose of law school. I guess I'll just get my 4.0 in underwater basket weaving and spend my time studying the LSAT.


iunno, ask adcomms why they only care about one major. prob cuz USNEWS doesnt give extra points for students that double majored. though i hear some top schools do give a SUPER SUPER small bump if you double majored (depending on what) as it contributes to the "rigor" of your curriculum.


adcomms=admissions committee

Lingon
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby Lingon » Mon Apr 25, 2011 9:58 pm

That makes a lot of sense.




mettasutta wrote:
Lingon wrote:What is adcomms? Sorry, I'm new around here.


DoubleChecks wrote:
Lingon wrote:I have read a couple of threads regarding whether or not it's wise to declare a second major. The consensus seems to be that all that matters is a high GPA. Why is that? Shouldn't the kid who is double majoring in Economics and Psychology and gets a 3.8 GPA get in to school X just as easily as the kid who is majoring in Criminology and gets a 4.0? What is it that I am not understanding here? I was originally thinking about declaring a second major + write a senior thesis but both seem worthless for the purpose of law school. I guess I'll just get my 4.0 in underwater basket weaving and spend my time studying the LSAT.


iunno, ask adcomms why they only care about one major. prob cuz USNEWS doesnt give extra points for students that double majored. though i hear some top schools do give a SUPER SUPER small bump if you double majored (depending on what) as it contributes to the "rigor" of your curriculum.


adcomms=admissions committee

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tea_drinker
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby tea_drinker » Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:06 pm

DoubleChecks wrote:
Yeah, I imagine it just gets to the point of whether it makes you stand out or not...like a soft. I mean, if I were an adcomm, a person who graduated with a high GPA triple majoring in chemistry, engineering, and philosophy would definitely get some bump in my book haha.


Why would a student with these major get an advantage? If anything, he/she looks lost and doesn't really know what to do career wise.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby DoubleChecks » Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:45 pm

tea_drinker wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:
Yeah, I imagine it just gets to the point of whether it makes you stand out or not...like a soft. I mean, if I were an adcomm, a person who graduated with a high GPA triple majoring in chemistry, engineering, and philosophy would definitely get some bump in my book haha.


Why would a student with these major get an advantage? If anything, he/she looks lost and doesn't really know what to do career wise.


kind of missing my point of how badass this student would have to be to have a high GPA triple majoring in chem, engineering, and philosophy (rigor of curriculum). surriously. and fine, assume they write a PS that explains why law school is the best next step for them, which i can imagine quite easily off the top of my head (they want to do IP law in the biochemical/chemical engineering whatever field, and they took on philosophy for the challenge of initially breaking out of their comfort zone, but then realized how they not only love it, they have a knack for it, blah blah).

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holdencaulfield
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby holdencaulfield » Mon Apr 25, 2011 10:54 pm

DoubleChecks wrote:
kind of missing my point of how badass dumb this student would have to be to have a high GPA triplemajoring in chem, engineering, and philosophy (rigor of curriculum). surriously. and fine, assume they write a PS that explains why law school is the best next step for them, which i can imagine quite easily off the top of my head (they want to do IP law in the biochemical/chemical engineering whatever field, and they took on philosophy for the challenge of initially breaking out of their comfort zone, but then realized how they not only love it, they have a knack for it, blah blah).



Not worth it.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby DoubleChecks » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:15 pm

holdencaulfield wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:
kind of missing my point of how badass dumb this student would have to be to have a high GPA triplemajoring in chem, engineering, and philosophy (rigor of curriculum). surriously. and fine, assume they write a PS that explains why law school is the best next step for them, which i can imagine quite easily off the top of my head (they want to do IP law in the biochemical/chemical engineering whatever field, and they took on philosophy for the challenge of initially breaking out of their comfort zone, but then realized how they not only love it, they have a knack for it, blah blah).



Not worth it.


lol i swear none of you are actually reading the other posts in this thread before commenting on mine. at least read my original one on this haha. im not saying people SHOULD do this, i was just saying that IF i were an adcomm and saw a student with a high GPA and a triple major in things like that, i would definitely give him a bump (like a really badass soft). it was also subtly pointing out the fact that double majoring doesnt really matter to adcomms.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby DoubleChecks » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:16 pm

holdencaulfield wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:
kind of missing my point of how badass dumb this student would have to be to have a high GPA triplemajoring in chem, engineering, and philosophy (rigor of curriculum). surriously. and fine, assume they write a PS that explains why law school is the best next step for them, which i can imagine quite easily off the top of my head (they want to do IP law in the biochemical/chemical engineering whatever field, and they took on philosophy for the challenge of initially breaking out of their comfort zone, but then realized how they not only love it, they have a knack for it, blah blah).



Not worth it.


oh and this hypothetical student would be smart enough to have a high GPA with those 3 majors :P which she enjoys

mettasutta
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby mettasutta » Mon Apr 25, 2011 11:18 pm

Anecdotally, applicants with IP creds (i.e. hard science backgrounds) get a bit of a boost from S, but don't risk it if it's not your forte. Double major in subjects you have passion for as long as it doesn't negatively impact the GPA.

firemed
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby firemed » Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:09 am

Lingon wrote:So, basically, law schools only care about rankings and they get high rankings by taking in people with high GPAs. Correct? That sucks...






Basically, yeah. There are exceptions, and I don't believe adcomms want to be this way. But, ultimately, 9/10 they are going to take high GPAs. Two reasons: One, they boost their ranking. Two, they get a student who- as best they can tell using a totally unverifiable metric- is more likely to succeed. It is exactly because GPAs are so subjective that adcomms use them this way. There is no real objective way for them to tell if my 4.0 in Sociology indicates that I am a better student than a person with a 3.7 in engineering. Most likely I am not, but who knows? It isn't like they took classes at one students small liberal arts college and the other's state school... so they just take the numbers at face value because they know it will raise their scores for US News and, at the same time, probably give them a student who can work. Probably.

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MartianManhunter
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby MartianManhunter » Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:18 am

DoubleChecks wrote:
kind of missing my point of how badass this student would have to be to have a high GPA triple majoring in chem, engineering, and philosophy (rigor of curriculum). surriously. and fine, assume they write a PS that explains why law school is the best next step for them, which i can imagine quite easily off the top of my head (they want to do IP law in the biochemical/chemical engineering whatever field, and they took on philosophy for the challenge of initially breaking out of their comfort zone, but then realized how they not only love it, they have a knack for it, blah blah).


That wouldn't be a very good personal statement, either. I double majored in the humanities and it had no notable impact.

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DoubleChecks
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby DoubleChecks » Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:24 am

MartianManhunter wrote:
DoubleChecks wrote:
kind of missing my point of how badass this student would have to be to have a high GPA triple majoring in chem, engineering, and philosophy (rigor of curriculum). surriously. and fine, assume they write a PS that explains why law school is the best next step for them, which i can imagine quite easily off the top of my head (they want to do IP law in the biochemical/chemical engineering whatever field, and they took on philosophy for the challenge of initially breaking out of their comfort zone, but then realized how they not only love it, they have a knack for it, blah blah).


That wouldn't be a very good personal statement, either. I double majored in the humanities and it had no notable impact.


how is double majoring in the humanities even remotely similar to triple majoring in chem, engineering, and philosophy? not to mention my hypo guy has a high GPA lol

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NikaneOkie
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby NikaneOkie » Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:40 am

Admissions to law school is what we call 'a numbers game'
the 4.0 student with one major will certainly beat out the 3.8 double major. First of all, there's no reason to assume absolutely that a double major would affect your GPA negatively, so why would admissions committees assume that. Second of all, they don't really care if there is a good reason; they need to keep their average GPA high for US News.

Personally, I don't see why double majoring in two subjects that interest you would hurt. I triple majored, and that is not what brought down my GPA, distributive requirements did. I'm not at all convinced that, had I single majored, I would have had a better GPA.

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tea_drinker
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby tea_drinker » Tue Apr 26, 2011 4:34 am

DoubleChecks wrote:
how is double majoring in the humanities even remotely similar to triple majoring in chem, engineering, and philosophy? not to mention my hypo guy has a high GPA lol


Double majoring in humanities is similar to triple majoring in chem, eng and phil, if both guys/gals have a 4.0 GPA. And this is my point, no matter how high a GPA your hypo guy has, he will be just as competitive as the one who has the same GPA and is single majored.

It may help a triple major guy when adcom compares his 3.0 with a different guy who has a 3.0 in basket weaving. But other than that, I doubt that there is any distinguishable advantage. Although, if anyone who can link basket weaving and law school may have enough BSing skills to get accepted.
Last edited by tea_drinker on Tue Apr 26, 2011 4:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

stylishlaw
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Re: Why not double major?

Postby stylishlaw » Tue Apr 26, 2011 4:37 am

Don't do it. Double majored at a prestigious undergrad, engineering + econ. Liberal arts majors are a joke in comparison. I spent less than a passing glance at my econ work and pulled over a 3.7+ in it. Had I known at the time I would eventually be going to law school, I would have gotten out of engineering.

Admissions is a numbers game. If you think about it, it's pretty difficult to compare grades across different Universities. Throw in variations in majors. It's too difficult, so they don't bother to do it at all.




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